The Mental Health of Agricultural Workers

Joseph D. Hovey and Laura D. Seligman

Key words: stress, anxiety, depression, suicide, coping

Because of the difficulties intrinsic to agricultural work, it might be conjectured that agricultural workers are at risk for mental health problems. Relatively little research has examined the mental health of agricultural workers, however, and much of the research that has been conducted on the topic is dated. Despite the scattered nature of this research, the image that has emerged reveals a population at risk for the development of mental health difficulties.

This chapter reviews the literature on stress and mental health of farm owners, farm operators, and farm workers; highlights a model of stress and coping; and gives recommendations for future research.

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